Attack: can damage only fire based or undead foes (when induced with Holy Water)
Stealth Bonus: Yes, but it is not relevant to venerable foes
Areas they can be found: near water sources: rivers, puddles, pools, fountains and even kitchen sinks.
Maximum amount in inventory (TDS only): 25
Symbol: Water Element
Length: 3.51 DromEd Units
- extinguishing torches, fireplaces, camp fires and any type of open fire-based lighting source
- cleaning blood puddles
- dealing with fire-based enemies like Fire Elementals and Fire Shadows
- dealing with Undead (when turned into Holy Water Arrows)
- disabling Mechanist Robots
- destroying the Fire anchor of a Maw portal (end-game mission, T1 & Gold only)
- feeding the Elemental Cocoon (TDS only)
- causing a carpet of moss to grow after using a Moss Arrow (TDS only)
- giving the gift of water to the Heartoak during the Ritual of the Root (TDS only)
In general, water arrows are the equipment a thief must have in his inventory at all times. A mission cannot be completed solely on their use, but their abilities prove useful in most situations.
The most basic and important function the water arrow has is putting out light sources. It gives the ability to increase the darkness area in a mission. Since as a thief, the player relies mainly on shadows, this makes the water arrows a staple in Garrett's inventory. To extinguish a torch, simply aim at it and fire. When the arrow reaches a hard surface it splashes water all around the impact area and puts out any open light source in a small area. Torches can be extinguished without hitting them directly with a water arrow, but the arrow must hit close enough to be successful. The same is the method with fireplaces. The aiming here is not critical, but a skilled archer can put out torches from a long distance, giving him more freedom of movement. Note that the water arrows have no effect on street lamps, lanterns, electrical sources or any magical sources like wisps or magic lamps. When a player tries to put out one of the above, he will waste the water arrow.
Damaging Fire Based CreaturesEdit
Water arrows can also be used as a method of attack. They normally do no damage to humans and most types of monsters, but they have a rare chance of doing a single point of damage to them. However Fire Elemental and Fire Shadows, which are quite resistant to most attack types, take severe damage from water arrows. A single water arrow can put out a Fire Elemental and 2-3 arrows can cause a Fire Shadow to run away. So it is clear that water arrows are quite necessary when venturing areas where those foes roam.
Holy Water ArrowEdit
Also, water arrows can be one of the most effective methods of fighting the merciless undead. However they have no effect on them unless they are turned into Holy Water Arrows with a Holy Water Vial or Font, both available only in T1/TG. Whenever the player uses one of his vials, his remaining number of water arrows is immediately turned into holy water arrows, allowing him to attack undead creatures with extreme efficiency. Two arrows are often enough to kill a roaming Zombie, and one is enough to kill a downed zombie. There are however a few restrictions the player must know. The holy effect lasts for 30 seconds from the moment the holy water bottle is used. If the player runs out of water arrows the effect stops. If a player uses a holy water vial when he has no water arrows, it is going to be lost. Keeping these facts in mind and following the basic rule, "never use holy arrows on small numbers of undead", a player can become a true undead hunter.
Washing Blood StainsEdit
The most uncommon use of water arrow is cleaning blood stains of the floor. Whenever a human foe is killed, he leaves a few stains of blood on the floor. Then, even if the player hides the body, another patrolling foe can get very suspicious when he encounters them. This feature of the water arrows allows the player to hide every evidence of the battle or assassination. It is not very common to use water arrow this way, mainly because higher difficulty levels forbid killing human guard or innocents. This is mainly useful when the mission requires killing or when a player's play style involves a lot of violence.
In Thief 2: The Metal Age, in addition to the human guards there are also Mechanist Robots. They are different variations, both metal beast and small service robots. They can mostly be destroyed by strong explosive weapons. But most of them have a small weakness at their backsides. The entire boiler can be hit with a water arrow, disabling it with not much noise. Worker Bots need one arrow, while Combat and Spider Bots need two. The Spider bot is harder to disable this way, due to its smaller hitbox, but are encountered only in Sabotage at Soulforge.
The water arrow has the same wooden shaft as the regular Broadhead Arrow, both in length and width, the only difference being its darker color in T1 and T2. The whole length of the water arrow is a bit bigger than the regular arrow because of its different arrowhead. Instead of a sharp broad head, each water arrow has a water crystal in its front end.
The water crystal has such aerodynamic shape that allows normal flight path of the arrow itself. Upon impact the crystal breaks and spreads water drops in a small area around it. This allows every open fire-based lighting source, e.g. torches, to be extinguished immediately. The crystal itself can be blessed with holy powers, which allow the water arrow to become a highly potent undead killer.
Water arrow making, fletchery, is a craftsman skill, but the crystals themselves are a natural phenomenon. The regular adventurer and traveler can search for water crystal anywhere in the vicinity of water pools like rivers, lakes or puddles. They can even be found in the vicinity of The City in water tanks, or underground rivers. This fact proves that the water crystal is indeed represented by the element of Water.